“All art is erotic.”Gustav Klimt
• 14th of July 1862 – 6th of February 1918
• symbolist painter
• influences: Japanese, Chinese, Ancient Egyptian and Mycenaean.
• influenced: Egon Schiele.
Gustav Klimt was born in Vienna, in 1862, the first born son of the Klimt couple. His father, Ernst Klimt, worked as an engraver and goldsmith, from whom he learned how to manipulate the famed metal.
Early in his artistic career, he was a successful painter of architectural decorations in a conventional manner, but for the rest of his life and even after, he was often the subject of controversy.
The three paintings designed to decorate the ceiling of the Great Hall of the University of Vienna were criticized for their radical themes and material, and were called “pornographic”.
All three paintings were burned in May 1945.
The frame’s upper margin quotes a verse by Schiller, indicating, in its difficult consensus, a distinctive sign of quality:
“If you can’t please everyone with your deeds and your art – please only a few. To please many is bad. Schiller.”Friedrich Schiller
Klimt’s ‘Golden Phase’ was met positively by critics and brought the painter great financial success.
In 2006, the portrait of Adele was purchased for the Neue Galerie New York by Ronald Lauder for US $135 million, surpassing Picasso’s 1905 Boy With a Pipe (sold May 5, 2004 for $104 million) as the highest reported price ever paid for a painting up until then.
Woman in Gold, is the title of the famous movie made about Maria Altmann’s (niece of Adele Bloch-Bauer) struggle of the legal campaign to reclaim from the Government of Austria, the portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer; movie inspired by Stealing Klimt, the documentary featuring Maria Altmann herself.
Find more of Klimt’s artworks on our e-store here.